ECpE student’s paper selected for power and energy conference

Charts of voltage research

A Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE) student at Iowa State University recently received a selection for the 2018 Power and Energy Society General Meeting in the best conference paper session on “Distribution Systems, Microgrids, and Renewables.”

Ramakrishnan Venkratraman, a fourth-year electrical engineering graduate student, submitted a paper last November for the annual Power and Energy Society General Meeting. Out of 2,000-2,500 submissions, 20 papers were selected as the best, and Venkratraman’s paper was one of them.

The Power and Energy Society General Meeting is an annual, widely attended conference with attendees from all over the world and is the largest and most popular conference in the work of power systems. The conference is scheduled to take place this August in Portland, Oregon.

Venkratraman began his paper in June 2017 and dedicated over three months of research to the topic. His topic revolves around distribution generation and the standards that come with it.

“There are standards in how the distribution should be interconnected in the system. According to the standards, if there is a fault in the system, this distribution generation should disconnect following a voltage and time criteria,” Venkratraman said. “When they disconnect, they cannot aid in the system recovery after the fault is cleared.”

His thesis of the paper recognizes the need for additional resource planning in view of the new standards for the distribution generation interconnection, which can potentially minimize the negative impact of increasing distribution generation.

“The initial claim is that having distribution generation will be beneficial to the delayed voltage recovery, but we have shown data that because of the standards, the distribution generation will disconnect. Therefore, it will actually make the recovery of the fault even worse,” Venkratraman said.

Siddhartha Khaitan, ECpE research assistant professor, and Venkataramana Ajjarapu, an ECpE professor, were two key players in the production of this paper.

“I am very grateful to my two professors, Dr. Khaitan and Dr. Ajjarapu. We discussed all the technical details in depth and thoroughly reviewed the results before submitting the paper,” Venkratraman said.

Venkratraman used his professors’ knowledge as a valuable tool, always analyzing new information with them and gaining their input.

“Rama has a sharp mind and can grasp main points quickly during my one-on-one meetings with him. It is a pleasure to work with him,” Ajjarapu said.